Loewen, Abram I. (1896-1973)
Abram I. Loewen: minister and bookseller; born 6 December 1896 in Neuendorf, Chortitza Colony, Russia. Abram was the oldest of nine children of Isaac Jacob Loewen (12 April 1867 - 16 May 1946) and Susanna (Giesbrecht) Loewen (17 November 1874 - 10 June 1917). He was baptized in Petrovka, Orenburg on 22 May 1917 by Rev. Heinrich Rempel. He married Katharina Harder (10 November 1896, Neuendorf, Chortitza Colony - 23 October 1993, Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada) on 30 June 1918 in Rodnitschnoje, Orenburg. She was the daughter of Peter Jacob Harder (b. 26 May 1869) and Anna (Rempel) Harder (2 July 1867 - 13 April 1899). Abram and Katharina had two adopted children, Lena and Walter. Abram passed away 11 October 1973 in Chilliwack, British Columbia (BC), Canada.
Abram moved with his family to the new settlement of Orenburg in 1898. On 9 October 1926 the Loewens arrived in Canada. They lived in several locations in Manitoba and Saskatchewan before moving to Clearbrook, BC in 1940, joining West Abbotsford Mennonite Church that year. When their farm was appropriated for the Abbotsford airport, they moved into Clearbrook and opened a bookstore. Abram was elected to the ministry and ordained by Rev. Jacob Janzen on 6 December 1942, becoming the second minister to be ordained in the congregation. He served as the interim leading minister of West Abbotsford congregation in 1945 following the resignation of Cornelius G. Tilitzky until the election of Heinrich M. Epp. Abram was also involved on the Bethel Bible Institute committee in various capacities, including chairman and secretary. When the Mennonite Benevolent Society was formed in 1953, Loewen served as the first board secretary.
In 1953 Abram became the pastor of the newly organized Clearbrook Mennonite Church, a daughter congregation of West Abbotsford. In 1958 they moved to Swift Current, Saskatchewan, to take over a Christian bookstore. He also served as an evangelist in Saskatchewan and, with his wife, operated bookstores in each of the communities in which they lived.
After an operation he was unable to regain his former strength and retired to Chilliwack, BC in 1964 where he died after a lengthy illness. Subsequently, Katharina moved to the Menno Home, where she lived for twenty years and was known to be an avid reader.
Der Bote (20 Nov 1973): 12; (15 Dec 1993): 6.
Peters, Gerhard I. Remember Our Leaders: Conference of Mennonites in Canada, 1902-1977. Clearbrook, BC: Mennonite Historical Society of British Columbia, 1982.
©1996-2013 by the Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. All rights reserved.
MLA style: Thiessen, Richard D. and David Giesbrecht. "Loewen, Abram I. (1896-1973)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. April 2005. Web. 20 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/L64901.html.
APA style: Thiessen, Richard D. and David Giesbrecht. (April 2005). Loewen, Abram I. (1896-1973). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 20 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/L64901.html.